The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) is launching a campaign to gain inclusion of Kiteboard Racing as an event on the Olympic Sailing program for the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games.
Already the campaign is carrying a lot of momentum. Personalities such as Virgin Group Chairman Sir Richard Branson (GBR), double Olympic Medalist Michael Gebhardt (USA), 9x Kiteboarding World Champion Kristin Boese (GER), Neil Pryde (NZL) and many more are supporting the effort with full force.
Neil Pryde, a world leader in the marine and adventure sports market states: “Kiteboarding today represents the cutting edge of sailing. This is a sport that combines athletic ability with equipment skills and it is easily accessible to participants world-wide. The Olympic Games stand at the pinnacle of sailing and it is therefore logical and natural that Kiteboarding has a place in Olympic Yachting.”
Sir Richard Branson, who recently hosted the first annual “Kite-Jam” on his private Necker Island, added, that “Kiteboarding is a fun and spectacular sport that I think would make a tremendously exciting addition to the Olympic Games”.
Kiteboarding can be found on every beach worldwide and is practiced by hundreds of thousands of people of all age.
Distribution networks exist even in the most remote parts of the world, making Kiteboarding a truly universal sport enabling especially emerging countries to take part in the Olympic Games at reasonable costs.
Men, Women and youth compete on exactly the same equipment of their choice. This greatly simplifies the pathway to the Olympic Games.
No need for special junior and youth classes – enabling national sailing programs to invest in the future with confidence.
For more information about the Olympic campaign please see the IKA Olympic micro site: http://olympia.internationalkiteboarding.org, which contains the full Olympic Campaign paper (pdf), a strategy paper for the Olympic Sailing competition (pdf), a list of all current Olympic Ambassadors, the first episode of the Olympic Campaign video and press pictures.